Take Back the Light Recycling Standards

Every spent lamp collected through Take Back the Light is processed at an approved facility that must meet stringent recycling and safety standards.

For more, download Program Requirements for Mercury Containing Lamp Recycling ~ Processor Standards (PDF, 30 pages, 544 KB).

Processing Lights for Recycling

Proper bulb recycling means bulbs are crushed and separated into their respective components, which find their way back into other markets. Glass and metals are are recycled, recovered phosphor powder is separated and sent for reuse, and metallic mercury is also distilled and cleaned to be collected and kept in circulation. To learn more about our process and industry best practises, visit our Resources page!

Transporting Lights for Recycling


Take Back the Light participants have two options for transport:

Supplier Responsible (recommended)

The seller/supplier arranges pick-up of spent lights from its buyers and is responsible for the safe transport to an approved processing facility. Take Back the Light endorses the Supplier Responsible model because it utilizes existing distribution channels to reduce unnecessary transportation, and demonstrates responsible end-of-life management of products.


Once a minimum number of spent lights are collected, a participant completes a Request for Service form. The processor schedules pick-up and arranges transport, and spent lights are sent to the processing facility. Transport costs vary, and depend on amount of lights and distance travelled. 

Approved Processors of Take Back the Light


Below are our approved processors. To learn more about them and how they can serve you and your business, visit our Processors page or click their logo to visit their website!